Definition of Cultivation

In Florida, cultivation of marijuana is defined as the growing of cannabis plants or the processing of cannabis products in violation of § 893.13(1)(a)(2), Fla. Stat.

Cultivation is a criminal act because it is considered an activity of controlled substance ‘manufacturing.’

  • See § 893.02(15)(a) (defining the term manufacturing to include “production,” “growing,” and “cultivating.”

Proof at Trial

To prove cultivation of cannabis, the State must establish 3 factual elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1.  The defendant manufactured (i.e. cultivated) a certain substance;
  2.  The substance was cannabis;
  3.  The defendant had knowledge of the presence of the substance.


Cultivation of Marijuana is a third degree felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Location Enhancement

Where a cultivation offense occurs within 1000 feet of a childcare facility, school, park, community center, or recreational facility, cultivation of cannabis can be upgraded to a second degree felony, with penalties up to 15 years in prison.

Premises Enhancement

Where a person owns or is in possession of a dwelling and cultivates marijuana with the intent to sell or distribute, the offense becomes a second degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

Possession of 25 or more cannabis plants constitutes prima facie evidence that the cannabis was intended for sale or distribution.

Where minors are present on the premises, cultivating or manufacturing of cannabis products may be upgraded to a 1st degree felony, with penalties of up to 30 years in prison.

Defenses to Marijuana Cultivation

Many of the defenses available in ordinary drug possession cases are available with cultivation or manufacturing charges.  Common examples include:

  • Absence of a warrant;
  • Defective warrant;
  • Unlawful execution of a search warrant;
  • Absence of probable cause to obtain a warrant;
  • Stale information forming the basis of the warrant;
  • Exceeding the scope of the search authorized by the warrant;
  • Invalid consent to search;
  • Coercive “knock and talk;”
  • “Constructive entry” during knock and talk;
  • Exceeding the scope of a consensual search;
  • Unlawful arrest or detention;
  • Absence of exigent circumstances;
  • Controlled substances not in plain view;
  • Warrantless search within the “curtilage” of a residence;
  • Miranda violations;
  • Right to counsel violations;
  • Overly broad search incident to arrest;
  • Overly broad protective sweep;
  • Use of unlawful police tactics constituting a “search.”

Contact an Attorney

If you have been charged with cultivation of cannabis in Jacksonville or the surrounding counties of Northeast Florida, contact Hussein & Webber, PL for a free consultation.